This post was inspired by, of all things, pansies–yes, pansies, those cute little flowers that are, in my neck of the woods, annuals and go by the more formal name of viola wittrockiana at home with the botanists.
I have a calendar that has a photo of pansies on it for the month of March and I was thinking of an incident that happened one day fairly early on in my retail gardening career. A customer came over and asked for a plant for a shady window box. It was probably April. I suggested pansies.
I hate pansies,” she said dramatically.
“That’s fine,” I said, “there are plenty of other choices,” but in my head I’m thinking “How can anyone hate pansies? They’re such cheery little flowers. First thing to show so much color in the spring. What is there to hate?”
And that’s where I pretty much came up with the idea that if we all liked the same thing, we’d have a very boring world.
I can’t tell you how many times I wound up using that line in my retail gardening career–and even how many times I’ve used it since. It solves a multitude of problems.
Express an interest in a particular political candidate and find out your officemate hates him or her? No problem. If we all liked the same thing…. (or in that case, person….)
Want to go to a particular event that your date/spouse/significant other wouldn’t be caught dead at? Once again, if we all liked the same thing….Just go solo.
And of course, with respect to gardening, I’m sure we’ve all seen all sorts of abominations that we would never dream of letting cross our property lines, be they plants, statuary or those cute little ornaments that proliferate sometimes. But it’s okay now, isn’t it?
This saying is like a “live and let live,” particularly with respect to gardening.
Because life really is too short to get worked up over someone else’s plant choices!